MOSCOW, July 23. /TASS/. Over 10,000 troops are involved in large-scale tactical drills running in Russia’s south, the press office of the Southern Military District reported on Thursday.
"Over 10,000 personnel of the Southern Military District are participating in force-on-force battalion-level tactical drills simultaneously running in eleven regions in Russia’s south and the Trans-Caucasus region," the press office said in a statement.
The motor rifle, armored and artillery units are accomplishing combat training assignments with a live-fire exercise at all-arms practice grounds of the Astrakhan, Volgograd, Rostov and Stavropol Regions, the Republics of Dagestan, North Ossetia, Adygea and Chechnya, in Crimea and at the Southern Military District’s bases in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
The drills also involve engineering, radiological, chemical and biological protection and medical troops, electronic warfare units, air defense, reconnaissance and other forces. Aircraft and helicopters of the Southern Military District’s Air Force and Air Defense Army are providing fire support for the troops and promptly delivering the personnel, the statement says.
The troops will live-fire Tornado and Grad multiple rocket launchers, Msta-S, Gvozdika and Akatsiya self-propelled artillery guns, Tyulpan and Malka heavy mortars. The reconnaissance/fire groups involve T-72B3, T-90 tanks and BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles. The command center will provide video control from all the places of the drills in real time, the press office specified.
A decision on continuing ten battalion-level and thirteen tactical drills that kicked off during a surprise combat readiness check was made by Southern Military District Commander Army General Alexander Dvornikov.
Overall, the Southern Military District is set to hold over 20 battalion-level tactical and more than 10 special drills in the summer training period.
The snap combat readiness check of the troops of the Southern and Western Military Districts, marine infantry of the Northern and Pacific Fleets, some units of central subordination and the Airborne Force was held on July 17 - 21 on order of Russia’s Supreme Commander-in-Chief President Vladimir Putin.
The surprise combat readiness check involved about 150,000 troops, around 400 aircraft, over 26,000 items of armament, military and special hardware and over 100 warships and support vessels.